A lot of water has passed under the bridge since the first edition of Films from the South festival was organized in 1991. The festival was initiated by a few students at the University of Oslo, and the first year the screenings took place at the University campus. The founders of the festival had noticed that it was an almost total lack of films from countries outside the western hemisphere being screened in Norwegian cinemas, and they had a strong interest in bringing films from other continents to screens in Oslo and Norway.
About 20 titles were selected from the three continents Latin America, Asia and Africa and screened for a quite small audience (mostly students) with a special interest in what we (and maybe them) thought was a bit “obscure” cinema. Which really turned out to be a totally wrong assumption. Already from the first year we had a devoted audience, increasing from year to year. During three decades, the festival has become the largest film festival of its kind in Northern Europe, with more than 28.000 admissions in 2019. Numerous famous directors have attended the festival throughout the years; filmmakers like Abbas Kiarostami, Fernando Solanas, Abderrahmane Sissako, Hisrokazu Koreeda, Pablo Larrain, Apichatpong Weerasethakul, Park Chan-wook, Dominga Sotomayor Castillo, Nadine Labaki and also exciting new voices like i.g. Wanuri Kahiu, Ash Mayfair and Melina León.
Although the Covid-19 virus is still active, making “normal” living and life difficult all around the world, we still plan for a full scale festival in late November this year, celebrating our 30th edition of the festival!
But we realize that it might be difficult, or even impossible in a worst case scenario, to invite and welcome physical guests in Oslo this year. So if we cannot invite “real people” due to Covid-19 restrictions, we will of course invite digital guests, and facilitate digital introductions, encounters and q&a’s between the filmmakers and our audience.
To our dear audience: we hope to see all of you at the FFS festival in November, so stay tuned for updated information at our website and SoMe platforms in the months to come
On August 18 we launch an outdoor festival pre-premiere; screening Bong Joon-ho’s Snowpiercer at the cool SALT venue in Oslo. Bong Joo-ho is the brilliant director behind Parasite and many other great films. Should you be in Oslo at this date, run to SALT to watch Bongs dystopia on a big outdoor screen next to the beautiful Oslo fjord!